Italian Expert Panel on the management of patients with coexisting spondyloarthritis and inflammatory bowel disease

Autoimmun Rev. 2014 Aug;13(8):822-30. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2014.04.003. Epub 2014 Apr 13.


Spondyloarthritis (SpA) is a group of diseases with similar clinical, radiologic and serologic features, including SpA associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD-associated SpA). Several studies have estimated the occurrence of SpA in IBD patients as ranging from 17% to 39%, confirming that SpA is the most frequent extra-intestinal manifestation in patients with IBD. In this paper, the expert panel presents some red flags to guide clinicians - both rheumatologists and gastroenterologists - to make a correct diagnosis of IBD-associated SpA in clinical practice. IBD-associated SpA classification, clinical presentation and diagnostic work-up are also presented. From the therapeutic point of view, only separate recommendations/guidelines are currently available for the treatment of Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and for both axial and peripheral SpA. However, when IBD and SpA coexist, the therapeutic strategy should be modulated to take into account the variable manifestations of IBD in terms of intestinal and extra-intestinal features, and the clinical manifestations of SpA, with particular attention to peripheral enthesitis, dactylitis and anterior uveitis. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt to define therapeutic algorithms for the integrated management of different IBD-associated SpA clinical scenarios.

Keywords: Crohn's disease; Inflammatory bowel disease; Integrated management; Spondyloarthritis; Therapeutic algorithm; Ulcerative colitis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Humans
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / complications
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / epidemiology
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / immunology
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / therapy*
  • Joints / immunology
  • Joints / pathology
  • Remission Induction
  • Spondylarthritis / complications
  • Spondylarthritis / epidemiology
  • Spondylarthritis / therapy*